March 5, 2010

Congressional Delegation Announces Over $13 Million in Recovery Act Funding for Transportation Projects in Rhode Island

Washington, D.C. – Rhode Island’s congressional delegation today announced that $13,693,931 has been awarded by the Department of Transportation (DOT) to the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) and the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) for projects throughout the state. This funding is provided through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), which was supported by all members of the delegation. In 2009, RIDOT reports that the Recovery Act created or saved over 1,900 jobs.

• $ 8,756,686 to RIPTA for critical infrastructure improvements such as Kennedy Plaza Bus Lane Renovations, Bus Shelter Installation/Rapid Bus Program, Maintenance Facility Improvements as well as for Operating Assistance.
• $ 4,353,273 to RIDOT for the construction of a parking garage and station platform for the Wickford Junction Station Project.
• $ 345,000 to RIPTA to replace existing metal halide and fluorescent fixtures in RIPTA administrative and maintenance facilities with new energy efficient light fixtures.
• $ 238,972 to RIPTA for the partial purchase of a low-floor hybrid electric propulsion bus that will improve the reliability of bus service throughout Rhode Island.

“This federal investment is about creating jobs to improve our transit facilities so that more Rhode Islanders can get to work. At a time when the state faces a lack of funding to meet transportation needs, this investment in Wickford Junction Station will expand commuter rail service to South County, providing new transportation options for thousands of Rhode Islanders,” said Reed, a member of the Appropriations Committee, who authored legislation to construct a new commuter rail station at Wickford Junction and extend Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority’s commuter rail service to North Kingstown. Reed has secured more than $28.6 million for the South County Commuter Rail project.

“The goals of the Recovery Act are to support economic development and help the job market, and these grants will do just that,” said Whitehouse. “By investing in our infrastructure, we are laying the groundwork to support our economy in the long term and create jobs in the short term.”

“These grants from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act represent the type of investments that are critically needed in Rhode Island,” said Kennedy. “Not only do they create quality jobs now, but they lay the foundation for long-term economic prosperity by developing public transportation projects that will protect our environment, ease traffic congestion, and connect the region economically.”

“It is critical to our state’s economic recovery to develop and enhance transportation alternatives,” said Langevin. “These investments will provide more energy efficient and convenient options for our workforce to access employment opportunities across Rhode Island. With this funding, we have the ability to create jobs and grow our economy, while simultaneously reducing harmful emissions.”


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